Subject: Re: Ransom (long) (was: Mandatory donations...)
From: Jonathan Magid <>
Date: Mon, 15 Oct 2001 00:35:33 -0400 (EDT)

On 14 Oct 2001, Kevin A. Burton wrote:

> > sorry, i must be very dense because I simply cannot understand why that ransom
> > model is incompatible with the GPL.
> >
> > You have some GPL'd code. You make some additions. YOU DO NOT RELEASE THE
> > CODE. you have done nothing to violate the GPL.
> Until someone says: "hey, can I get the source code to your package?" and you
> say "no, not until the ransom is met".   Then you have violated the GPL:

I was thinking the same thing- this is a definite GPL violation. I was
thinking of the part of the GPL that says:

"You may not impose any further restrictions on the recipients' exercise
of the rights granted herein."

That would seem to include, the considerations that the Ransom License
would add.

And I was set to post my thoughts- but then I considered this: if the
derived version of the ransomed package that you wish to ransom, was based only
on the originally ransomed code, and the Ransom License allows derivative
works to be made and released, only after the original Ransomed code's
period of ransom was over then I think it would be okay. The modifications
and the additional restrictions added by the Ransom would be permitted by
the original license. The next author could only start with the original,
pre-GPL release. Every release made after that (or modified by a third
party) would have to follow the terms of the GPL and be entirely libre.

Global Village Idiot
Email: jem@sunsite^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hmetalab^H^H^H^H^H^H^